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Home > Anatomy & Physiology > The Anatomy of the Spine

The Anatomy of the Spine

 

The 5 sections of the spine:

  • The cervical spine makes up the neck and has 7 vertibrae.
  • The thoracic spine has 12 vertibrae which the ribs attach to.
  • The lumbar spine has 5 which make the lower back.
  • The sacrum consists of 5 bones which are fused or stuck together and the coccyx is made up of 4 tiny bones and used to be a tail.

Intervertibral Discs

Each vertibrae is separated by intervertibral discs which are flexible cartilage discs. These allow movement in the spine and have a shock absorbing or cushioning function as well.

Segment of the spine

Each disc is made up of two parts, a tougher fibrous outside and a central substance called nucleus pulposus. When a disc is damaged (or prolapsed) it is the squidgy liquid in the middle which often squeezes out putting pressure on the spinal cord causing pain.

Prolapsed disc

Test Yourself:

Name the 5 sections of the spine











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Name the 5 sections of the spine



  • Cervical
  • Thoracic
  • Lumbar
  • Sacrum
  • Coccyx




Next Card >

How many vertebrae are in each of the sections?











Flip Card >

How many vertebrae are in each of the sections?



  • Cervical = 7
  • Thoracic = 12
  • Lumbar = 5
  • Sacrum = 5
  • Coccyx = 4



Next card >

What are the two functions of the intervertebral discs?










Flip Card >

What are the two functions of the intervertebral discs?



  • Allow movement and shock absorption






Next card >

Name the two types of bony process which protrude from each vertebrae










Flip Card >

Name the two types of bony process which protrude from each vertebrae



  • Spinous processes and transverse processes






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External links:

 

Next - Types of bone >>

 

The spine
   
 

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